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Teaspoon fights back to win Widden Stakes

With his fledgling stable continuing to emerge, Michael Freedman has produced his first autumn carnival contender in Widden Stakes winner Teaspoon.

Saturday’s Group Three race for two-year-old fillies at Rosehill marked Freedman’s first Australian stakes victory since relocating to Sydney from Singapore last year after eight successful years of training.

After taking up the running Teaspoon ($7) was passed by Mystic Empire ($14) at the 250m mark but fought back strongly to win by half a length.

Sweet Deal ($12) closed off nicely to run third.

While Freedman has the numbers to be a major player in Sydney racing, his stable is mostly populated with young horses yet to race.

He will wait to see how Teaspoon pulls up before locking in her autumn carnival targets.

“She was there to be run down and she just kept fighting,” Freedman said.

“We’ll give her a nice week after this to get over today.”

Teaspoon gave Freedman his first two-year-old winner for the season in November at Canterbury.

“She’s two for two and I think she did it pretty tough today,” Freedman said.

The race was marred by Deanne Panya’s fall from Sebring Express in the home straight with the apprentice rider conscious when taken to hospital with a suspected broken collarbone and throat trauma .

As Panya was being treated on the track, the winner was brought back to scale by Hugh Bowman who said Teaspoon had responded strongly after working hard in the early stages of the race.

“I thought I was a beaten commodity at the 300-metre mark but as I went past the 200 I could see she was lifting and she was strong to the line,” Bowman said.

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